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  • Mal de Fin: Paintings 1989-1990 by Rene Ricard

Mal de Fin: Paintings 1989-1990 by Rene Ricard

Petersburg Press

Offset Lithograph


Edition Size: Unknown

Sheet Size: 17.5 x 20 inches


Condition: Good

Details — Click to read

Original poster commemorating Rene Ricard’s 1990 exhibition Paintings 1989-1990 at the Petersburg Press Gallery, New York. The image reproduces his painting, Mal de Fin, 1990. Ricard embellished a framed thrift store painting of a sailboat at sea, scrawling “Mal de Fin” in black paint over scribbled gold pastel and daubed pink paint. French for “Bad End”, Mal de Fin may be a play on “Fin de siècle”: the end of century, ending of an era and the beginning of another, and “Mal du siècle”: sickness of the century, a phrase attributed to the 18th/19th century French writer François-René de Chateaubriand. Chateaubriand’s notion of turn-of-the-century ennui no doubt resonated with the famously moody artist.

This poster is not previously owned and comes from the archives of Petersburg Press.


The Artist

Rene Ricard

In the 1980s, he wrote a series of influential essays for Artforum magazine. Having achieved stature in the art world by successfully launching the career of painter Julian Schnabel, Ricard helped bring Jean-Michel Basquiat to fame. In December 1981 he published the first major article on Basquiat, entitled “The Radiant Child,” in Artforum. Ricard also contributed art essays to numerous gallery and exhibition catalogs. Ricard was immortalized by Basquiat in the drawing entitled Rene Ricard / Axe, representing the tension that existed between the two. Andy Warhol called him “the George Sanders of the Lower East Side, the Rex Reed of the art world.”

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